I was wondering if you could break down the career opportunities in auditing and consulting (in a big 4). I know that consulting pays more in a big 4 and has more interesting work, but it seems that auditing has extremely good exit opportunities (Financial controller, CFO etc). Any thoughts on which is better in the long run?
Well there's different consulting services offered by public accounting companies - the most popular being IT consulting and risk consulting. There are also other consulting services offered, but these two hire the most. Do they pay more? Yes, but not by much. Not enough for you to say: Shoot, the $$ is a huge reason for me to move over. Is the work more interesting than audit? Yes. You're actually looking over a company's processes and telling them what to do instead of what not to do (audit). Everyone I know who's made the switch likes it waay better than audit.
In the long run though, choosing audit vs consulting really depends on what you want to do. If you want to become a controller, you'd want to go into audit. Stay till at least manager year and an array of controller jobs fall on your lap for you to do. Essentially, if you think you'd want to be in charge of books and records for a company, audit is the perfect fit as a career launchpad. If you want to go into internal audit, start off in auditing and then switch to consulting. Companies love hiring people out of risk consulting to go into internal audit. An IT consulting job will be a great transition to go into consulting at firms like Accenture. Hope this helps